Botaniko, Esperanto for botanical, comprises 18 botanical artists living in and around Hobart, Tasmania. Most of its members have been, at one time or another, students of one of Australia’s leading botanical artists, Lauren Black. Botaniko was formed in 2014.
The aim of the group is to foster the enjoyment of botanical art mainly through the medium of graphite drawing, colour pencils and/or watercolour; to pursue projects of botanical significance within Tasmania, culminating in an exhibition; and to continue developing skills through workshops with external artists. The members meet on a weekly basis from February to early December, working on a variety of individual and/or joint projects.
During 2020 members worked with the Tasmanian Herbarium and the Tasmanian Museum and Art Gallery (TMAG) to paint a selection of native plants found growing on the Wind Song property, on the Tasmanian East Coast, part of which has recently been returned to the Traditional Owners by the Tenniswood family. The works were exhibited in the Salon Gallery (Tasmanian Museum and Art Gallery – TMAG) December, 2020 – February 2021, moved to the Art Gellery at Triabunna, and is now traveling to Kettering and Woodbridge, south of Hobart.
Botaniko members have now commenced their major project for 2020/21, recognising the work of plant collectors Ken Gillanders OAM and his late wife Lesley who collected from countries once part of the ancient continent of Gondwanaland. Many of the plants collected by Ken and Lesley are growing at their former home, Woodbank Gardens at Longley. With the kind permission of the current owners, Harry and Kerry van den Berg, Botaniko members are currently taking advantage of the flowering season and committing magnificent species to paper. This project will be exhibited early 2022 at the Heritage Museum, Margate (TAS).
Since its inception members of the group have participated in a number of projects, including:
- 2014: Port Arthur Historic site: An Exotic Garden – Port Arthur: Unlocking the botanical journey, depicting plants transported to the Port Arthur penal settlement, along with convicts, a commandant, officers and soldiers.
- 2015: Tasmanian Museum and Art Gallery (TMAG): Reverend Robert Knopwood’s kitchen garden, depicting plants grown between 1804-1824, in the garden located on the land later occupied by Narryna in Battery Point, Hobart.
- 2016: A return to the Port Arthur Historic Site by invitation, to continue the journey: Port Arthur – An Exotic Garden: Unlocking the Botanical Journey Part 2. Plants of medicinal, culinary, and industrial significance used by the early settlers of the site in 1800’s.
This exhibition travelled to a number of venues, by request, during 2017.
- During 2017, most Botaniko members worked on a special project in association with the Royal Tasmanian Botanical Gardens, to commemorate the Garden’s bicentenary in 2018.
- 2018: The works for the 200th anniversary of the Royal Tasmanian Botanical Gardens were displayed in the POD at the Botanical Gardens in August and September 2018, with members of Botaniko in attendance each day.
- 2019: The major project for 2019 Frederick Mackie – Quaker Plantsman., focussed on the plants recorded in Frederick Mackie’s Journal, A Traveller under Concern, written during his visits to Narryna from 1852-1855. This exhibition was on display at the Narryna Heritage Museum, Battery Point, Hobart, TAS from September 2019 until February 2020. It can now be viewed at the Kingston Library, 11 Hutchings St. Kingston TAS, until November 28, 2020.
Botaniko Art Group Membership
The group has reached maximum capacity, however, should we be able to accommodate more members in the future, notification will appear on this site.